Windows 10 is a really great desktop operating system, but it is not for everyone. For those that care deeply about security and privacy, an open source Linux-based operating system is a wise alternative. The problem? Learning a new user interface can be hard for some. If you have always used a Windows OS in the past, moving to a desktop environment like GNOME or Unity can be confusing and scary.
Luckily, for those that have difficulty with change, there are some Linux-based operating systems that are designed for Windows-switchers. One fairly popular such offering, Zorin OS, has now reached version 12. It is designed to be familiar to former users of Microsoft's OS. While the company does charge for an "Ultimate" version, the "Core" edition of Zorin OS 12 is entirely free.
Operating systems don't quite date back to the beginning of computing, but they go back far enough. Mainframe customers wrote the first ones in the late 1950s, with operating systems that we'd more clearly recognize as such today—including OS/360 from IBM and Unix from Bell Labs—following over the next couple of decades.
Many Linux distributions over the years have tried to look like Windows including Lindows, to a certain extent Linux Mint and of course Zorin OS.
Q4OS with the XPQ4 theme is definitely the one that has achieved the best results.
Zorin OS looks to be moving in a slightly different direction now and I have just installed version 12 as a dual boot to Q4OS so a review will be coming shortly.
I could have made my experience with XPQ4 better by installing the ttf-mscorefonts-installer package from Synaptic.
So now I have all the software I need installed, all hardware setup and running and I am using Q4OS on a daily basis.
As an operating system I am finding the performance is extremely good and everything is extremely stable.
Check out this guide which shows how to make Q4OS look like Windows XP, 2000, 7, 8 and 10.
There is a seemingly endless variety of Linux distributions in the marketplace, each attempting to carve out its own unique market niche. Zorin OS is one such flavor — a desktop-focused Linux distribution with the goal of helping Windows and macOS users to make the transition to Linux. Zorin OS 12, its latest milestone release, became generally available Nov. 18. Among the improvements in the new release is the updated Zorin Desktop 2.0, based on the open-source Gnome Shell. The new desktop provides users with redesigned icons and a new look for windows and navigation. A feature of Zorin worth noting is the ability to configure the desktop using Zorin Appearance, a tool that provides configurable options for layout, theme, fonts and panel display. Zorin OS also aims to help make the transition from Windows easier by directly integrating the Wine software compatibility layer, which enables many different types of Windows applications to run natively on Linux. Additionally, the included PlayOnLinux tool provides Zorin OS users with a menu of games, internet and office applications that can be installed easily. This slide show covers some of the key highlights of the Zorin OS 12 release.
The future for one of the few remaining alternative mobile OS platforms, Jolla’s Sailfish OS, looks to be taking clearer shape. Today the Finnish company which develops and maintains the core code, with the aim of licensing it to others, announced Sailfish has achieved domestic certification in Russia for government and corporate use.
In recent years the Russian government has made moves to encourage the development of alternatives to the duopoly of US-dominated smartphone platforms, Android and Apple’s iOS — flagging Sailfish as one possibility, along with Tizen. Although Sailfish looks to have won out as the preferred Android alternative for Russia at this point.
We started FreeDOS in 1994 to create a free and open source version of DOS that anyone could use. We've been slow to make new releases, but DOS isn't exactly a moving target anymore. New versions of FreeDOS are mostly about updating the software and making FreeDOS more modern. We made our first Alpha release in 1994, and our first Beta in 1998. In 2006, we finally released FreeDOS 1.0, and updated to FreeDOS 1.1 in 2012. And all these years later, it's exciting to see so many people using FreeDOS in 2016.
The second release candidate of FreeDOS 1.2 is now available, approximately one month after FreeDOS 1.2-RC1 and twenty-two years after the FreeDOS open-source project began.
Endless OS is a Linux-based operating system which seeks to provide a streamlined, simplified user experience. A large part of the user experience is provided by a custom desktop environment (EOS Shell) which is a fork of GNOME 3.8. The distribution is available in two editions, a 1.5GB Basic edition and a larger (approximately 13GB) Full edition. The Basic edition offers a small number of applications and is suitable for most situations where the user has an Internet connection. The Full edition ships with a large collection of software and is therefore more suited to off-line installations.
The Endless OS website mentions that support for audio formats, such as OGG and MP3, are built into the operating system, but most video formats are not supported. Video codecs and Netflix support are available for purchase through the Endless on-line store.